TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

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D@vid Bu3ker
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TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#1 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » March 14th, 2019, 9:34 am

2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte - France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan (3/13/2019)
Another wine served blind, and decanted about 3 hours prior to service...

This was a bit darker in color than the 2001 Pontet Canet is was served with, and had a darker fruit profile - more black fruit than red. That being said, it also showed developing complexity, with a rich, earthy core, and touches of spice, cedar and a little lingering touch of vanilla. It's got plenty of stuffing, and it's evolving in a nice direction. I would hold off for another 3 years or so to allow it to continue on the current aging curve. What was once borderline too modern in style for my taste, is rounding into a lovely wine, evocative of Bordeaux, and more specifically Pessac.

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David Glasser
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#2 Post by David Glasser » March 14th, 2019, 10:51 am

Because it seemed to have shifted modern, all my remaining post-2000 SHL went off to auction when we downsized a year ago. Good to hear that it is aging nicely, though I’m now kicking myself for that choice to unload.

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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#3 Post by Greg Mitrakas » March 14th, 2019, 4:31 pm

Hi David. Thanks for the TN and glad to see this wine trending well for you. I had picked up a case on release and although it has always been in the modern camp I have really enjoyed every bottle I've had. And I'm not one to really gravitate to the modern. The 01 SHL is balanced, ripe but still unmistakably Bordeaux; has a wonderful mouthfeel and a killer finish. A fan of this vintage of this wine. I posted my last tasting note on this several months back. Glad I still have a few in the cellar.

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Marc Frontario
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#4 Post by Marc Frontario » March 14th, 2019, 5:06 pm

My very first Pessac....the gravel, slate and earthy graves goodness still haunts me
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Pat Martin
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#5 Post by Pat Martin » March 14th, 2019, 5:27 pm

I’m still surprised SHL floats your boat, Marc. The ones I’ve had post-2000 were like a vanilla creamsicle.
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#6 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » March 14th, 2019, 6:13 pm

This was decidedly not. It had a little vanilla, but only a very little.
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Marc Frontario
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#7 Post by Marc Frontario » March 14th, 2019, 7:39 pm

Pat Martin wrote:
March 14th, 2019, 5:27 pm
I’m still surprised SHL floats your boat, Marc. The ones I’ve had post-2000 were like a vanilla creamsicle.

Now when I tasted the 2005...I almost spit it out...'04 is wayyy btr

'08 too is quite nice I found..not sure what they were trying ro pull with the '05...too modern
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Chris Seiber
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#8 Post by Chris Seiber » March 14th, 2019, 10:38 pm

Marc Frontario wrote:
March 14th, 2019, 7:39 pm
Pat Martin wrote:
March 14th, 2019, 5:27 pm
I’m still surprised SHL floats your boat, Marc. The ones I’ve had post-2000 were like a vanilla creamsicle.

Now when I tasted the 2005...I almost spit it out...'04 is wayyy btr

'08 too is quite nice I found..not sure what they were trying ro pull with the '05...too modern
I often find that riper/oakier styled BDX is better in cooler vintages like 02 and 04 or moderate vintages like 01 than big vintages like 05. I know I’ve had SHL in 01, 02 and 04 and it’s been very good those years.

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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#9 Post by Marc Frontario » March 15th, 2019, 2:05 am

Chris Seiber wrote:
March 14th, 2019, 10:38 pm
Marc Frontario wrote:
March 14th, 2019, 7:39 pm
Pat Martin wrote:
March 14th, 2019, 5:27 pm
I’m still surprised SHL floats your boat, Marc. The ones I’ve had post-2000 were like a vanilla creamsicle.

Now when I tasted the 2005...I almost spit it out...'04 is wayyy btr

'08 too is quite nice I found..not sure what they were trying ro pull with the '05...too modern
I often find that riper/oakier styled BDX is better in cooler vintages like 02 and 04 or moderate vintages like 01 than big vintages like 05. I know I’ve had SHL in 01, 02 and 04 and it’s been very good those years.
This [thumbs-up.gif]


Tasted the '04 abput 6 times
..always nice, some variation...but one time my jaw hit the tile it was that good.
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Pat Martin
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#10 Post by Pat Martin » March 15th, 2019, 7:03 am

I guess my main beef with SHL has been the oak level (with a creamy texture a secondary issue), but oak can integrate with time. I should retry.
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Matt Richman
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#11 Post by Matt Richman » March 15th, 2019, 1:25 pm

I've had a few bottles of this over the years. I do think it's a quite modern style. But I disagree that one has to wait on this. I feel like it has been drinking well for at least 5 years.

A very nice wine and not as overly modern as I'd originally feared.

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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#12 Post by Ramon C » March 16th, 2019, 7:10 am

Pat Martin wrote:
March 15th, 2019, 7:03 am
I guess my main beef with SHL has been the oak level (with a creamy texture a secondary issue), but oak can integrate with time. I should retry.
My beef with SHL, especially the 2002, is the exact opposite of yours. Creamy with espresso texture first, then that oak as secondary.

My last 2 tries with my 2002 bottles had not been successful for me, and I bought back at release because my sampling then was promising.
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Re: TN: 2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Léognan)

#13 Post by Jim Friedman » March 16th, 2019, 2:07 pm

We had the 2000 last night and it was excellent. Everything you want mature Bordeaux to be.

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